The book “Knitting Patterns For
Beginners” is aimed primarily at people who are not very confident or
experienced enough to work from complicated patterns with their incomprehensible
abbreviations. However, some of the patterns may be of interest to experienced
knitters as well.
At the start of the book are some useful
tips on knitting paraphernalia that may help to encourage more people to “Have
a go,” and a page is also included that explains all the abbreviations and
terms used in this book.
The first few patterns are very basic but
show just what can be done with a little thought and the simplest of knitting
designs. As the book progresses the patterns become more complicated, but, the
knitted ball, beret, frog puppet and round cushion cover all remain quite simple
and basic in their design and construction. At the back of the book are more
cuddly toys such as a duck, rabbit, mole and postman which are best left until a
little more experience has been gained.
Anyone that works successfully through all the patterns included in this book should have gained enough confidence to tackle more complicated patterns and with a little thought, may, find that they can make up some simple patterns themselves.
As Mrs Hartley is 83 she has been knitting
for about 75 years since learning at the age of 8.
All through her life she has sat knitting in the evenings, at first while
listening to the radio and then after the 60s while watching television. Having
retired some 10 or 11 years ago she also spends a little while knitting in the
afternoons. All this knitting is put to good use with a constant supply of
sweaters for the family and cuddly toys for the youngsters. For the last few
years she has also presented the local nursery/playgroup with a couple of boxes
of cuddly toys every Christmas.
As you will see from this book she does not
always have bought patterns to work from but often makes up her own or alters
Mrs Hartley has written several articles for
local news papers on gardening and has just been asked to write some articles
for the local blind newspaper as surprisingly she is registered partially
sighted, which, makes this book and her hobby, all the more remarkable. Her
refusal to give up knitting as her sight has deteriorated is an inspiration to
Unlike many people her age her hands are as slim and as agile as they were when she was 20 years old. Mrs Hartley’s doctor puts this manual dexterity down to her regular knitting and says that she is unlikely to ever suffer from Arthritis in her hands. It is to be hoped that she is just as able when she is in her 90’s and as her father still went out for brisk walks until he died at the age of 98 it is quite possible!
If like Mrs Hartley you suffer from poor
eye-sight, brightly coloured knitting pins are available from some shops and
special row counters are also sold at blind centres and certain disability
shops. Special tape measures with holes in them to enable the user to feel the
measurement are also available.
Apart from coming in different colours
knitting pins are also made in different lengths that can make some things
easier to knit. Simple gauges can be bought for measuring the size of pins and
converting from standard sizes to their metric equivalent. Some people also
prefer knitting pins that are made from bamboo that can sometimes be seen on
In the old days toys were stuffed with odd bits of cloth, old stockings and anything else that was available, but, nowadays with health and safety awareness it is recommended to use a fire resistant material. This can be bought from most wool shops and comes in fairly large bags that should prove sufficient to stuff 3 or 4 cuddly toys depending upon their size. The filling is specially manufactured and comes with the EU or BS standards symbols printed on the bag to guarantee quality. This material also has the advantage of being washable without clumping up in the toys.
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